Azalea or Rhodie ID

Newport News, VA(Zone 7b)

I know very little about azaleas other than I have a few in my landscape that bloom nicely each spring. I saw this tall, and gorgeous shrub at Wade and Gatton's Nursery in Belleville Ohio. It was in bloom about a month ago when I was visiting, and I was told it was an Exbury hybrid but neglected to get a cultivar name for it. It was tall...perhaps 7 feet tall and around, and had a beautiful branching structure, which was underplanted with some of their hostas. I'm considering adding some shorter shrubs under three crepe myrtle trees (Natchez), which are planted about 15 feet apart. I have a large hosta collection, so am looking for things which will bloom and provide shade for the hostas after they start to emerge in the spring.

From my research so far, I've discovered that they are azaleas rather than rhododendrons (I think!). I've never seen any azaleas this tall though. The color is just gorgeous, and I'm wondering if you can help me ID it, or something similar and provide recommendations on their care and growth rate. This is the only picture I can find that I took of it, unfortunately...will check again though.

I am in zone 7b borderline 8a, in Southern Virginia near the Chesapeake Bay.

Thumbnail by largosmom
Hurst, TX(Zone 7b)

Arneson Gem or Golden Lights? Arneson Gem is upright a compact, about 3-4'. Golden Lights is fragrant.

Newport News, VA(Zone 7b)

I found that one on the plant files and the color is similar...this shrub was closer to 8 feet tall, though. I'll look up Golden Lights. I did not notice a scent, but it was overcast that day and threatening rain, and I have a bad nose!

Culpeper, VA(Zone 7a)

I recently purchased what was labeled as "Cannon's Double" but was actually Golden Lights. When fully blooming you cannot miss the scent. It's heavenly!

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

I have a Northern Lights Yellow and while it is wonderfully fragrant it is more yellow, with less of the darker gold highlights. Guess down south you wouldn't need such a hardy azalea

Christiana, TN(Zone 6b)

We do need that hardy of an azalea down here. At least I do. The Northern lights are gorgeous. That's the only reason I need to grow them.

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

Wabbit ( :) )
I had the Northern Lights pink and mandarin yellow planted three years ago. Got one flower on the pink one last year and this winter the mice ate them both to the ground. they were only about 12" tall, but still. The roots may survive but three years of growth - poof

Christiana, TN(Zone 6b)

You must feel like I did when voles devoured my huge clumps of Frances Williams and Sieboldiana. My solution? I got me some cats.
Seems to be helping a lot. :-)

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

Sadly, for more reasons that just to kill mice, I can't have cats. DH is allergic.

Hurst, TX(Zone 7b)

I have the same allergy problem so no cats. The dogs seem to help with pest problems but they cannot reach some areas where a cat might but it is strange... I have been in contact with some cats that produced no allergic reaction (so maybe it is the cat dander that triggers it for me). Since weather triggers allergies too, I now take pills every day. Watch out for deer; they will eat your azaleas too.

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

We only have moose -- big deer I guess. lol My bushes are all in a fenced in back yard to protect them from moose. And I spray PlantSkyyd in the front yard to protect plants there.

Caldwell, NJ(Zone 6a)

Exbury Azaleas are deciduous members of the Genus RHododendron. Which were hybridized by Lionel de Rothschild of England in the late. 1930's

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

arfits, you are indeed a compendium of information. I learn something new every time I log on. Thanks for filling in so many big gaps in my horticultural file.

Mary

Caldwell, NJ(Zone 6a)

Exbury Azaleas are deciduous members of the Genus RHododendron. Which were hybridized by Lionel de Rothschild of England in the late. 1930'sThey like .Acid soil and high shade

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

How do the Exbury azaleas compare with the Northernlights series. Mine are planted out in full sun, almost 24/7 here in Alaska.

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